Doggie Cookies – Peanut Butter & Banana

Dog Cookies

You can easily make extra, double and triple the recipe, roll the dough into logs and wrap in waxed paper, put in ziploc baggie and freeze for later use. It saves prep time and dirty dishes. You can either use an electric mixer or mix by hand.

2 Cups Flour (Wheat or White)
1 1/2 Cups Oats
1 tea Baking Powder
1 Cup grated Apples or 5-6 Ripe Bananas
1 - 2 Table Blackstrap Molasses
1/2 - 1 Cup Peanut Butter
1 Table Vegetable Oil
1/2 Cup Water
1 Egg

Grate apples. I run apples through food processor but you can hand grate or very finely chop. I’ve used a combo of apples and bananas, I would use whatever I have on hand.

Combine Grated Apples or Bananas, Peanut Butter, Oil, Water, Egg, Molasses in large bowl. Mix Well

Add Flour & Baking Powder. Mix. Add Oats, mixing well.

Roll dough 1/2″ thick. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters. If you want to skip that step, you can make “drop cookies”. Roll into small balls and press down in cookie sheet.

Bake 350 degrees 10-20 minutes. Depending on how thick your cookies are. Thinner cookies bake fast.

Give them to your pooch in small amounts. Have fun!!

July & August Summer Flowers

Angelonia

These Angelonia’s performed well all summer. The summer started off cooler with much more rain than normal, but for the past three weeks we have had no rain and above normal temps. The flowers have for the most part done well this year. The moon flowers were all volunteers this year and have done fabulous.

Moonflower

I love going out in the late evening or before sunrise to see these beautiful, fragrant flowers. These moon flowers came up right in the middle of our vegetable garden pathways but I walk around them, I’m not going to disturb such lovely and healthy plants. Buds on the moon flowers are interesting as well.

Moonflower Bud

I love the delicate blooms of the surprise lily, the Amaryllis belladonna is always gorgeous.

Amaryllis belladonna

We have lots of butterflies that spend the summers in our gardens.

Butterfly

The vibrant red of the hibiscus is always a favorite.

Red Hibiscus

Bees and butterflies love the liatris. This is the third year for it.

Liatris and Bee

The tropical blooms of the yellow hibiscus is beautiful also.

Yellow Hibiscus

The purple bee balm I planted this spring did well and bloomed most of the summer.

Purple Bee Balm

I’m looking forward to cooler weather, the changing of leaves and the gardens settle down into the fall and winter ~

Natural Oil Facial Cleanser – Argan Oil Makeup Remover

Facial Oil Cleanser with Snapdragons background

I began making this oil cleanser after a request for a special order for a natural oil facial cleanser. I did months of research and carefully formulated this facial cleanser with pure nourishing and healing oils, all natural ingredients and no unnatural additives. It is vegan friendly.

Facial Oil Cleanser

This is a powerful yet gentle facial cleanser that will leave your skin refreshed, soft and deeply cleansed. Excellent for normal, dry, sensitive or mature skin types. Oil cleansers are one of the most natural and effective ways to remove makeup and cleanse your face.

Oil attracts oil and is the natural cleanser. Trapped bacteria, and dirt are the main cause of oily skin and acne. Commercial soaps and cleansers can strip your skins natural oil which make all skin conditions much worse. By using the right oils, you can cleanse your pores of dirt and bacteria naturally, gently and effectively, while replacing the dirty oil with healing ones extracted from natural plants that will protect and nourish your skin.

Facial Oil Cleanser with purple flowers

Ingredients: Argan Oil, Grapeseed Oil, Sweet Almond Oil, Extra Virgin Cold Pressed Olive Oil, Sea Buckthorn Oil, Evening Primrose Oil, Rose Hip Seed Oil, Essential Oil

Benefits of Oils:

Argan Oil
Argan Oil is a highly valuable oil made from the kernels of the Argan tree. Healing and restoring, rich in antioxidants, it softens and tightens the skin, restores moisture balance which makes skin appear younger and firmer. Rich in antioxidants and omega 6 fatty acids, high in E, it helps combat acne and other skin conditions. Used for centuries by women in Morocco on their skin, hair and nails to restore from the effects of the harsh desert air.

Grapeseed Oil
This is a light, satin like finish oil. It has a very sweet, light and slightly nutty aroma. It has astringent qualities which make it good for tightening and toning the skin. Grapeseed is high in linoleic acid which makes it a wonderful moisturizer and nourishing for the skin. Grapeseed is good for oily, acne prone skin. It is easily & deeply absorbed into the skin. Grapeseed oil is high in fatty acids. High in anti-oxidants it helps protect skin from free radicals and sun damage.

Sweet Almond Oil
This oil is extracted from almonds. It is high in fatty acids and proteins. It is a natural emollient and softens and balances moisture in your skin. It helps with inflammation and itching. It penetrates well, and will not clog your pores. It is good for all skin types.

Extra Virgin Cold Pressed Olive Oil
Known for its therapeutic properties, olive oil has been used for over 5000 years by Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. Extra Virgin olive oil is the best for you as it is the least processed and retains the most nutrients. Olive oil is soothing in feel, and is very rich in essential fatty acids and is hydrating. It is a great moisturizer and softens skin. It is good for hair, skin, and lips. Olive oil is high in anti-oxidants and vitamin E. It protects against age-accelerating free radicals. It is very good for many skin conditions.

Sea Buckthorn Oil
This oil is extracted from the berries of the sea buckthorn bush. They say these berries have the single highest source of vitamin C, vitamin E, unsaturated fatty acids, essential amino acids, and beta-carotene, excellent for skin. It has a natural musky scent. High in natural anti oxicants, this oil helps wrinkles, dryness, and dry, aging skin. Promotes healing of other skin problems.

Evening Primrose Oil
Oil is extracted from this herbal plant. Widely known as an anti aging oil, Evening Primrose Oil has been used since the 17th century. It is rich in gamma linoleic acid and omega fatty acids which rejuvenate and moisturize skin, and evens out skin tones. Nourishing for skin and hair, and for reducing signs of some skin conditions and aging.

Rose Hip Seed Oil
Oil is extracted from the seeds of a native rose plant which grows wild in Chile. Rose Hip Seed Oil has been used for centuries for treating burns, scars and stretch marks. High in essential fatty acids, it is moisturizing for dry, irritated or damaged skin. Rejuvenates your skin, nails and hair. It soaks into skin quickly, leaving no residue.

I store my natural oils in cool storage to preserve freshness and use dark colored glass to maintain integrity of oils as you use them. Light breaks down some oils during storage and dark colored glass protects oils. Oils are mixed fresh when you order them and left natural or scented with a natural essential oil.

Argan, Sea Buckthron and grapeseed oils

To Use:

Apply to dry or slightly damp skin. Pour a nickel size of natural oil cleanser onto your fingers. Gently massage oils onto skin for at least a minute, using slow, firm motions, working deeply into your pores so that makeup, dirt, dead skin cells and bacteria are dissolved into the oil.

Next, wet a washcloth with hot water, and put it over your face for about a minute until cloth has cooled some. This is opening up your pores, removing the impurities and the dead skin cells.

Gently wipe the facial cleansing oil away, then rinse the washcloth well in warm, running water. Do this several times. Gently wipe.

Give your face a final rinse, pat dry, apply toner and moisturizer if needed.

Pouring facial oil cleanser

I make these fresh when ordered and they are available through my Etsy shop and website.

~ Pure & Natural Essential Oils ~ These are therapeutic as well as wonderfully fragrant!

Chamomile & Neroli EOs
A soothing aroma. Floral, like honeysuckle, a touch fruity, and herbs scent

Frankincense & Myrrh EOs
Rich, woody, earthy scent. Healing.

Geranium EO
Nourishes and re-hydrates dry & mature skin

Jasmine & Rose EOs
Floral, light, uplifting

Patchouli EO
A very strong, earthy scent. You either love it or hate it. Anti-depressant.

Spanish Lavender EO
Wonderfully relaxing, aromatic scent, calming nature

Facial Oil Cleanser with Impatiens Flowers

Jenks Herb Festival & Tulsa Oklahoma Trip

Azaleas

One of my favorite activities of the year, is the herb festival and strolling around in Tulsa. We took a day trip up to Jenks Oklahoma for the festival via the old Route 66 Saturday. It was a two and a half hour drive through small towns, and past large ranches, pastures and woodland. I love the back roads, I would take them over major highways any day.

Route 66

We were able to bring one of our pooches Snuggle. We enjoy pet friendly places, including the Jenks Herb Festival and Woodward Park. Sand Springs, in a nearby town has a larger herb festival the week before but not only is it too crowded, they are not pet friendly. Jenks had a shop giving out samples of their homemade doggie biscuits during the festival, a very friendly environment.

Bruce & Snuggle Jenks Herb Festival

The Herb Festival is sensory overload for plant and herb lovers. So many herbs of every type from over a hundred vendors. It is helpful to have a small cart to put your items in because it is blocks of walking. One of my favorite vendors Wild Things Nursery was there. If you love butterflies, and are near Oklahoma, they are the people to get plants from. They have tons of helpful info about host plants and butterflies on their website too.

Arkansas River

After a few hours at the herb festival,  we ventured on into Tulsa to visit my favorite park and view the Arkansas River. The levels of the river have come up since the drought of the past few years.

Landscaping at Woodward Park

Woodward Park off Peoria Avenue in Tulsa, Oklahoma is 40 acres of beautiful landscaping, wildlife and natural beauty.

DogWood Trees nestled below  taller oaks

The park has about 15,000 azalea bushes, plus dogwood trees, flower and herb gardens, ponds, waterfalls, interesting bridges, all set among huge old oak trees and rolling hills.

Kesha & Snuggle Bridge

It is a dream for photographers and nature lovers. There were birds and wildlife all around and I even had a couple of squirrels that came and took a snack from my hand.

Squirrel coming up to me

I am a country girl at heart and an animal lover, so I enjoy interaction with all of God’s amazing creatures.

Squirrel enjoying a snack

My husband was the one who began offering a few tidbits to the squirrels. They were wild and they did not stay around long.

My husband feeding a squirrel

I took hundreds of pictures in the park, Tulsa, and also in the atrium of the Tulsa Garden Center. They have gorgeous orchids and many other flowers.

Kesha & Snuggle Azalea Bushes

It is hard to find time to get away for even a day trip but this is well worth the trip!

April Around our Farm ~ Spring Flowering Trees and Shrubs

Oklahoma Crab Apple Tree Blooms

We have had continuous blooms around the yard with the many blooming trees and shrubs. This year is a blessing with so much extra rain, the plants are soaking it up.

Pink Flowering Almond Bush Blooms

The pink flowering almond bush is always so pretty with delicate flowers and the little transplants are blooming as well!! They have been transplanted for a couple of years now, but barely survived due to extreme temperatures and drought, even with supplemental watering.

Oklahoma Flowering Crab Apple Tree

Our Oklahoma crab apple tree is very showy this year, so beautiful, just covered with blooms, and the hundreds of tiny bees that buzz around gathering nectar.

Oklahoma Flowering Crabapple Tree

We have lost several small but nice trees over the past few years, a cherry tree, a prairie fire crab apple and the peach tree is not in good shape. I have several young transplants from the peach tree that I had started that seem to be doing well.

Cattle grazing on our grass

We have the cows back grazing on our land, they are so peaceful. I love the little calves, they will jump and play just like little kids. They do such a good job keeping the grass down, they give us free fertilizer which is excellent for the tomatoes, and vermiculture. They also eat the poison ivy off the trees which is a huge problem around here.

Male Goldfinch eating on the feeder

The goldfinches have been hanging around all winter and the males are turning a bright yellow for their spring and summer color. The females will stay an olive green all year. Gold finches love sunflowers, and I always plant extras for them.

Woodpecker on Suet

The small woodpeckers loves eating my homemade suet. We have hung some extra suet feeders out on the pergola, near their nesting areas.

Cardinals on birdfeeder

We have many pairs of cardinals this year, the females are harder to spot, they are so much darker in color than the pretty bright males. Their favorite nesting spot here is in the thorny bitter orange tree very close to our house. I can watch them feed their babies from our window. The thorns does not bother the birds and it helps protect them from predators.

For the Birds: Easy to Make Scrumptious Suet Recipe

I have been making suet for the birds for years. It is very easy to make and the birds absolutely love it. I tested my handmade suet against store bought brands and the birds ate all of mine and hardly touched the store bought, so it has won the taste test!!

You can easily adjust the recipe to fit your own ingredients and supplies you have at home.  Feel free to substitute and use up extra ingredients you have. It was hard for me to measure and figure out amounts of ingredients I use because I add by sight and feel!!

This makes a full cake pan, which I cut into 6 large blocks. Ingredient measurements do not have to be exact. It is a forgiving recipe.

Easy to Make Scrumptious Suet

2 lbs Lard ( I buy the 4 lb buckets and use half in a batch)

1/2 cup Oats ( optional) I use regular oats, minute is fine

1 cup+ Cornmeal

1/2 Cup Peanut Butter (creamy or crunchy)

1 1/2 Cups+ Wild Bird Seed ( or scratch) ( I put seed in Christmas Tins for easy measuring)

1 1/2 Cups+ Sunflower Seeds ( Black oil is best, in shell is fine or sunflower nuts)

1 – 2 cups Dried Fruit, Trail Mix or Nuts 1 – 7 oz pkg is approximately 2 cups ( I use up slightly older (but still fresh) and extra items that we aren’t eating, but I have bought just for suet. Dollar Stores and Dollar Tree have reasonably priced dried fruit and nuts)

1. In a large pan, melt lard and peanut butter in pan over low heat, stirring occasionally. While lard is melting gather and prepare a cake pan lined with waxed paper or tin foil. ( I recycle the wax insert bags that dry cereal like cornflakes come in. Rinse them off, air dry and store. They work perfectly in the cake pans, and they are much stronger than regular wax paper)

2. Add cornmeal to melted suet and peanut butter mixture. Stir until cornmeal is absorbed.

3. Turn off heat. Add oats.

4. Add wild bird seed and sunflower seeds/nuts to mixture. Stir to feel texture. You may add more seed and sunflowers if needed. You want it fairly thick.

5. Add fruit and nuts. Stir

6. Carefully pour suet into lined cake pan. Use a large spoon to gently distribute the ingredients evenly. Sunflowers in hulls tend to sit on top. This is okay.

7. Wait for suet to cool and set up. We love setting ours outside in the cold on the back deck and covering with an old screen and weighting with a few rocks to keep critters out. If you have room, you can pop it in your freezer for a bit.

8. Once it has set up, I usually wait a few hours, then cut into squares. I use a butter knife to carefully cut through the suet. It is easy to cut if it isn’t frozen solid!!

9. Remove suet from pan and store in fridge or freezer or a very cool location like a garage or cellar, or secured place outdoors. I put 3-4 squares in a gallon size Ziploc freezer baggie for storage and lay flat. I use disposable latex gloves to handle the suet, your hands will get very greasy and slippery if you do not use gloves!!

It is easy to remove the suet squares, pull up on the corners of the wax paper and it lifts up so you can get your fingers under the corner square and carefully pull out of pan.

We have small wire cages we hang with suet and we have several different suet feeders that I made from small logs we cut from tree limbs. I will give instructions in another post. I like to stuff the extra pieces of suet into the logs, woodpeckers especially love eating from these.

We like to use this suet recipe in spring, fall and winter but not in summer. Suet will melt down in heat. This is nutritious for the birds and keeps them alive during brutal winter days. We really enjoy watching the woodpeckers, titmouse, chickadees, cardinals, blue jays, and others who come to feast at the feeders.